There's a large number of web and app developers out there. There are about 25 million software developers world-wide and loads of new software developers coming out of the Universities every year. Though there are millions of developers.
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As we converse to people in various parts of our industry, we realized that the major issue is that there's lack of skilled embedded developers. The Universities lack in providing actual knowledge about embedded development, which is why students these days don't know what a hardware register and an interrupt handler is neither would they have seen disassembly listing even once in their life. Many Universities just take the easy path and focus on higher-level software development only.
Embedded industry is getting advanced too. Developers now use readymade building blocks that are readily available, along with the development tools. Usually, when working with IoT, developers take a readymade IoT platform and just add the application logic needed. Hence, the simplified app development model.
Embedded development is custom designed hardware boards, hence it is extremely different from PC web or app development, even with better tools and readymade software components. Engineers, who have knowledge on how to port readymade platforms to custom designed hardware boards, add or modify device for various sensors and actuators, and have to debug the stuff when the system doesn't boot as expected, are required.
During the last couple of decades, the embedded market has been projected to explode, as virtually any product now have some intelligence built into it. Add the IoT hype, and the expectations are skyrocketing - some 50 billion IoT devices are expected by 2025. There is clearly a need for a lot of embedded developers in the future. There's no scientific data to prove it, but after listening to industry colleagues in various countries and continents, it appears the number of embedded developers coming out of Universities are reducing, as these academic institutions focus more on higher-level software industries, like web- or games development. At least relatively speaking, when the growth of our industry is factored-in. And so, my belief is that embedded developers have a bright future indeed. Perhaps less so for the companies developing embedded systems, unless they will be able to find skilled engineers to staff their development teams in the future. A lack of skilled embedded developers might become a real problem onwards.